FTIAS Ltd was one of the island's first companies to celebrate the concept of flexi-working and adopt it within their company culture. They dedicate countless hours and extensive budgets to training and development and are proud to foster in their team an overall sense of belonging, brand loyalty and a great passion to achieve success for their brand. Christine Apap, HR and Corporate Communications Manager at FTIAS Ltd found the time to meet us to share more details regarding FTIAS Ltd’s journey to achieve the prestigious Equality Mark certification by NCPE.
Why was it important for the FTIAS to achieve the Equality Mark?
The Equality Mark is awarded to companies which satisfy a set of rigorous criteria that include the implementation of equality and sexual harassment policies, ensuring equal access to family-friendly measures, and guaranteeing equal opportunities in recruitment and career development. We are extremely proud of the fact that FTIAS Ltd, achieved this certification way back in 2011 and were one of the first brands to acknowledge the importance of the Equality Mark.
Have you adopted any family friendly measures in your organization? Elaborate.
All staff members can choose their starting time at work based on their personal preferences - this isn’t a particular recent measure because we first introduced flexible working hours way back in 2008. Back then, staff members could start work anytime between 0730 and 1000 and would leave the office after an-eight hour day. Today, that flexibility has increased even more and the company gives individuals the opportunity to choose their working times, not necessarily work 8hr days, and commit to clock in 40 hours of work. We also offer our full-time staff members the possibility of working reduced hours. Our company employs more than 150 employees and approximately 10% are currently working reduced hours because of personal or family commitments. While some choose to work 30 or 35 hours a week throughout the year, others may work 20 hours a week in Winter and then work full-time in Summer. There are other employees who have worked reduced hours for a number of years and have now reverted to working on a full-time basis because the children have grown up.
Additionally, we have also started our first attempts at teleworking and earlier on this year, we launched a pilot project with one of our operations teams which might lead to the introduction of innovative working solutions, while simultaneously increase organisational effectiveness.
What are your views as regards to flexibility in your working environment?
Flexibility is crucial. It is an undeniable fact that today many of us juggle various commitments. I firmly believe that offering an increased degree of flexibility has served to strengthen the employment relationship. I also think that productivity has actually increased because staff members are more focused on their tasks because they feel safe in the knowledge that if something crops up, they have the flexibility they need to set things right and last, but not least, the fact that we offer flexible working hours makes us more competitive when sourcing talent on the job market.
Are there any females in top management posts? What are their roles?
In the Senior Management team, females outnumber men in the ratio of 2:1. There are two women for every man, holding different operational and administrative positions. Girl power indeed! FTIAS Ltd does not discriminate against employees or candidates on the basis of age, disability, marriage and civil partnership, pregnancy and maternity, race, religion and belief, sex or sexual orientation. The principles of non-discrimination and equality of opportunity also apply to the way in which we treat visitors, clients, suppliers and former employees. Furthermore we are committed towards ensuring fair treatment of all job applicants.
Why do you believe that other entities, organizations and businesses should strive to achieve NCPE's Equality Mark?
The Equality Mark recognises organisations that demonstrate a commitment towards equality, certifying them as true, equal opportunities employers and, therefore, this should be a certification all employers strive to achieve.
One can easily conclude that when it comes to flexi-working and integrating 21st century working strategies within their company culture FTIAS Ltd are pioneers. Furthermore, while the team is extremely proud to have been one the first to achieve the Equality Mark certification they continue to invest heavily in the renewal process and have appointed an Equality Representative to ensure that they continue to create a working environment where individuals are able to make the best use of their skills, develop their talents and work in a discrimination and harassment free environment were all talent thrive to achieve success.
THE EQUALITY MARK IS AN INITIATIVE DESIGNED BY NCPE AND SUPPORTED BY THE EUROPEAN SOCIAL FUND. INDIVIDUALS ARE ENCOURAGED TO CONTACT NCPE FOR ASSISTANCE EITHER BY MAIL ON EQUALITY@GOV.MT OR BY TELEPHONE ON +356 2590 3850.
This is a sponsored post by FTIAS Ltd